Types of Jackets: A Guide to the Different Styles


Joanna Elizabeth


Updated October 22, 2023

Types of Jackets
Take a closer look at all the types of jackets.

In the world of fashion, jackets have stood the test of time as both functional wear and style statements. With countless variations, different types of jackets are essential for the fashion-conscious and the comfort-seeker alike. They each boast their unique flair and purpose. 

Our guide offers an in-depth look into the most iconic and versatile jackets that have defined generations and continue to shape contemporary style. From jackets with origins in war to rebellious styles, there are plenty of outerwear styles to follow.

Types of Jackets

Blazer: The Versatile Classic

Blazer Types Jackets J Crew
The classic blazer brings sharp tailoring and versatile style. Photo: J. Crew

A cornerstone of classic tailoring, the blazer is typically structured and adorned with notable lapels and pockets. Its versatility is unparalleled. Whether completing a business-ready ensemble or elevating jeans on the weekend, the blazer remains an emblem of refined style.

Bomber Jacket: Aviation-Inspired Outerwear

Bomber Types Jackets HM
The bomber jacket features an aviation-inspired blend of function and flair. Photo: H&M

The bomber jacket was originally designed for military pilots and is known for its ribbed cuffs, hem, and front zip closure. It’s transcended its aviation roots to become a fashion staple. 

Its padded structure offers warmth, while its design adds a touch of timeless sophistication. Paired with diverse outfits, from casual to semi-formal, the bomber encapsulates versatility, making it a beloved choice for various fashion enthusiasts.

Denim Jacket: The Quintessential Casual Wear

Denim Types Jackets Old Navy
A denim jacket features a rugged charm that meets urban chic. Photo: Old Navy

Crafted from rugged twill textile, the denim jacket embodies casual charm and durability. With its distinctive metal buttons and flap pockets, it exudes a relaxed yet refined aura. 

It is adaptable and complements a range of outfits, from summer dresses to layered winter wear. As it ages, its unique wear pattern becomes a testament to its wearer’s journey, showcasing the enduring allure of denim.

Faux Fur Jacket: Ethical Exuberance

Faux Fur Types Jackets HM
Get some luxurious warmth in a faux fur style. Photo: H&M

In a growing conscious world, the faux fur jacket rises as a beacon of sustainable style. Crafted to mimic the warmth and plush texture of real fur, these jackets provide the luxury of fur without the ethical dilemma.

With its sumptuous feel and cruelty-free promise, the faux fur jacket offers an opportunity to don a lavish layer and make a conscious fashion choice, uniting luxury with responsibility.

Field Jacket: Military Heritage & Function 

Field Types Jackets J Crew
Get practical in the field jacket. Photo: J. Crew

Steeped in military heritage, the field jacket was crafted with the soldier in mind. This jacket epitomizes utility and durability, originally draped in cotton and tinged with earthy tones of olive, khaki, or brown. Its distinctive bellowed (or gusset) pockets, designed for on-the-go essentials and a stand-up collar to combat the elements are hallmarks of its design.

Fleece Jacket: Cozy Comfort

Fleece Types Jackets Free People
Keep it cozy in a fluffy fleece material. Photo: Free People

A champion of lightweight warmth, the fleece jacket is made from synthetic wool-like fibers. It’s a soft, fuzzy beacon of coziness and is designed to provide insulation without adding bulk. Its versatility shines through in a brisk morning jog or a campfire evening. 

Fringe Jacket: Retro Resonance

Fringe Wrangler Types Jackets
Bring some playfulness to your outfit with a fringe style. Photo: Wrangler

Inspired by the 60s and 70s and influenced by the carefree Western and Bohemian styles, the fringe jacket has made a comeback in modern fashion. Its standout feature, the flowing fringe, adds a lively touch and a unique vibe. 

Whether crafted from leather, suede, or synthetic fabrics, this jacket doesn’t simply provide coverage—it adds movement and personality, making a statement with every step.

Leather Jacket: Edgy Style

Leather Types Jackets Allsaints
Channel timeless edge in a leather jacket. Photo: AllSaints

A leather jacket is a fashion piece crafted from tanned animal hides, synonymous with iconic and edgy sophistication. Celebrated by rockers, bikers, and goths, its appeal is universal. Beyond its stylish veneer, the leather jacket offers durability and protection. 

Whether worn in a biker or classic style, it instantly elevates an ensemble. This jacket stands out as a bold fashion statement and an investment in timeless cool.

Parka: Ultimate Cold-Weather Armor

Parka Types Jackets ASOS
Brave the elements in the classic parka. Photo: ASOS

Born from the need to combat the extreme cold, the parka is a long, hooded coat often lined with fur or faux fur. Its durable exterior shields against harsh elements, while its insulated interior offers unmatched warmth. 

Often featuring spacious pockets and a drawstring waist, the parka combines functionality with a casual, rugged aesthetic, making it a winter staple for many.

Puffer Jacket: Cold-Weather Chic 

Puffer Types Jackets Allsaints
The puffer jacket stands out with its full shape. Photo: AllSaints

The puffer jacket is recognized for its unique quilted pattern, which was developed to withstand cold weather conditions. Often with a bulky appearance, it promises unparalleled warmth and introduces a dash of modern elegance to cold-weather ensembles. 

From city streets to snowy landscapes, the puffer jacket is a testament to the balance of function and fashion.

Quilted Jacket: Elegance Meets Warmth

Quilted Types Jackets Everlane
There’s elegance in every stitch of a quilted jacket. Photo: Everlane

With its origins in the chilly countryside, the quilted jacket showcases stitched patterns that not only exude elegance but also trap warmth. Often lightweight, its design melds practicality with a touch of luxury. The intricate quilting, more than just ornamental, offers insulation against brisk temperatures. 

Rain Jacket: Your Armor Against Downpours

Rain Types Jackets North Face
The rain jacket is your protection against water. Photo: The North Face

Engineered to repel water, the rain jacket is constructed from water-resistant or waterproof materials like Gore-Tex or coated nylon. Often featuring sealed seams and adjustable hoods, it’s designed to shield you from relentless rain. 

Lightweight and practical, the rain jacket ensures that gray skies won’t dampen your day or your style.

Safari Jacket: The Adventurous Classic 

Safari Types Jackets Brooks Brothers
Get ready for a stylish adventure with the safari jacket. Photo: Brooks Brothers

Originating from the rugged terrains of African safaris, the safari jacket speaks of adventure and practicality. Defined by its belted waist, epaulets, and multiple flap pockets, it is usually crafted in breathable materials and earthy tones. 

Whether navigating urban jungles or real ones, the safari jacket offers utility and infuses a touch of worldly sophistication.

Suede Jacket: Supple Elegance

Suede Types Jackets Allsaints
Soft and luxurious, the suede jacket is perfect for different outings. Photo: AllSaints

Suede, a soft and luxurious material derived from leather, is a popular choice in the fashion industry. A suede jacket embodies this tactile delight with its velvety texture. Its brushed finish gives it an understated sophistication.

This makes it versatile for casual and refined looks. The jacket’s unique texture and subtle sheen blend durability with elegance, proving its longevity and style.

Suit Jacket: Tailored Sophistication

Suit Types Jackets J Crew
Get polished in a suiting style. Photo: J. Crew

The suit jacket stands out in formal attire with its structured shoulders, lapels, and button closures. It’s a testament to precision and refinement. Crafted to complement trousers of the same fabric, it seamlessly transforms any outfit into a polished ensemble. 

Track Jacket: Athletic Legacy 

Track Types Jackets HM
Be on the run in a track jacket silhouette. Photo: H&M

Birthed from running tracks and sports arenas, the track jacket has sprinted its way into mainstream fashion. Its lightweight fabric, often adorned with stripes or color blocks, speaks to its athletic origin and urban adaptability. 

With a zipped front and flexible fit, the track jacket offers comfort and contemporary style, resonating with sports enthusiasts and fashion lovers alike.

Trucker Jacket: Americana Refined 

Trucker Types Jackets Levis
The trucker style is another denim staple. Photo: Levi’s

Birthed from the heartlands of America, the trucker jacket is a more tailored and shorter cousin of the denim jacket. Its distinguishing features include pointed flaps on its chest pockets and vertical seams that grant it a structured appearance. 

The trucker jacket is often rendered in durable denim, which is a testament to timeless style, effortlessly blurring the lines between rugged charm and urban chic.

Varsity Jacket: School Spirit

Varsity Types Jackets ASOS
Get into the collegiate spirit with a varsity design. Photo: ASOS

Steeped in nostalgia and athletic heritage, the varsity jacket, often known as a letterman jacket, showcases a blend of wool body and leather sleeves. 

It is adorned with embroidered patches and insignia and tells tales of school achievements and sports accolades. This jacket doesn’t just keep you warm; it’s a wearable trophy of memorable moments.

Windbreaker: Lightweight Shield 

Windbreaker Types Jackets North Face
The windbreaker is available in modern and retro styles. Photo: The North Face

Crafted from thin, lightweight materials like nylon or polyester, the windbreaker is designed to be folded into its worn pocket. It’s your go-to barrier against brisk winds and light rain. 

Designed for portability, its minimalistic and functional design makes it an essential layer, perfect for outdoor adventures or unpredictable weather transitions.

Zipped Hoodie: Casual Comfort’s Best Friend

Zipped Hoodie Types Jackets Old Navy
The zipped hoodie is a casual essential. Photo: Old Navy

A symbol of relaxed style, the zipped hoodie, crafted primarily from cotton or blends, is a zip-front jacket with an integral hood. Celebrated for its simplicity and comfort, it’s a staple in casual wardrobes worldwide. 

Perfect for lounging or active endeavors, the zipped hoodie is synonymous with easy-going vibes and versatile wear.

The Definition of a Jacket

Fashion Types Jackets
A checkered jacket brings a certain elegance to any look. Photo: Shutterstock.com

A jacket is more than just an outer layer; it blends design and practicality. The core of any jacket is its material, whether that’s durable leather, light cotton, or warm down. 

Its shape is designed to fit and shield the body, usually including features like collars, cuffs, and zippers or buttons. Valuable additions like pockets and inner linings add to its functionality. Every part of a jacket, from its stitch to its seams, is crafted for comfort and style.

Jacket vs. Coat: What’s the Difference?

A coat is a type of clothing that combines style with function uniquely, much like its counterpart, the jacket. The length of a coat is typically longer than a jacket, extending past the waist and often reaching the thighs or ankles, which is intentional to provide additional warmth and protection against the elements. 

The coat offers a more comprehensive shield than the jacket, thanks to its elongated form, and features such as lapels, belts, and various closures enhance its practicality and elegance. 

Despite both garments providing warmth, protection, and style, the subtle differences in design and length distinguish the timeless coat from the versatile jacket.

Final Words

Casual Types Jackets
From casual to formal, there are many styles of jackets. Photo: Shutterstock.com

From the denim jacket’s rugged appeal to the blazer’s refined elegance, the different types of jackets cater to every style, occasion, and climate. They’ve evolved over the years, intertwining functionality with fashion, and have solidified their place in our wardrobes. 

Whether you’re gearing up for an adventure or looking for the perfect addition to elevate your ensemble, there’s a jacket out there that’s tailor-made for your needs. Embrace the world of outerwear and find the perfect layer to express yourself.

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